An Officially Unofficial Yooyu
I'm just your everyday, nondescript Petpet. My color is plain, the color that I was born with. I am not painted a special color and I'm okay with that. I enjoy all the same activities as any other Petpet: taking walks in the park with the other Petpets, being fed only the highest grade Petpet food available, and being pampered with toys, grooming items, and a nice cushy bed to curl up in at the end of the day. A comfortable and relaxed life definitely the life for me. That is all I want and all I will accept.
Oh. You've noticed, haven't you?
I am a Yooyu.
This fact has many implications that I can assure you are not true. I do not like to be handled, I do not like the loud cheering of the Altador Stadium and I most certainly do NOT like to be tossed about like some sort of ball! It's just not in my nature.
So, you may be wondering why a Yooyu would feel the way I do, and especially why I am making this known during the height of the Altador Cup season. Let me explain my past to you.
I was a young Yooyu, just becoming large enough to be used as a ball but just under the standard size limit required for an official game of Yooyuball. Therefore, I was given to the children of a local school team as a plaything--the audacity, I know! But at the time I was actually ecstatic about being so important as to be used as a ball in such an important game, official or not! So I trained and worked out, practicing curling up into a tight ball and staying that way as I was tossed gently back and forth by my early handlers. It wasn't too bad, the landings were just a little rough. But I was ready to move on and hopefully size up so I could be considered for an official game. This kiddie game would be a breeze and then my real career would start! I could already hear the cheers as I enter from below the playing field...all for me! I was shipped to the school and I bounced around in my cage in anticipation the whole way there!
As soon as I arrived at the school, I could hear the cheering. Were they cheering for a tiny Yooyu like me already? I hadn't even become official yet! I couldn't believe the fact that these children were my fans already when I hadn't even seen them yet! My handler and I approached the field of excited children and my anticipation turned to dread very quickly.
The kids were not cheering for me as I had originally thought. They were screaming, yelling at one another as they ran around the dinky practice field, shouting as they tugged a poor Plushie Yooyu back and forth by the arms. The arms! Didn't they know the first rule of Yooyuball? The Yooyu is a BALL! The children didn't give the poor guy a chance as they pulled back and forth on his arms, a third child (this one a blue Kougra) grabbing onto the Yooyu's legs and giving a sharp tug. I gasped in horror as the poor guy was ripped in half and stuffing poured out of his severed body. I started to cover my eyes with a hand and then I realized with only a small amount of relief that the Plushie Yooyu was, in fact, a Yooyu plushie of the non-living sort.
"Ah, you ruined it!" the Kougra whined, placing the blame solely on the other two children. "Now what will we do for fun?" His sneer turned to a delighted smile as he turned and saw my handler approaching with me at his side. "Is that...a REAL Yooyu?!" the Kougra practically screamed in disbelief. His voice cracked at the peak of its volume and I flinched, wincing a bit. The entire field of rambunctious children all turned at once, their eyes focused only on me. I began to hop back and forth on my feet a bit, feeling quite sheepish. I had not expected this. I was supposed to feel confident when all eyes are on me. These are my first fans after all! I couldn't make eye contact, though, especially after seeing what the children did to the poor plush.
My handler and a teacher exchanged some words and I was quickly left alone with the children. Immediately, I was grabbed at by several children. A clawed hand here, an Elephante trunk there, but a skilled Kougra paw snatched me away from the rest and I instinctively curled into the tightest ball I could muster, unwilling to share the fate of that plushie.
"Give him here!" a child yelled.
"Throw him, I'm open!" another called excitedly.
"I want a turn!" several kids whined.
It was obnoxious and my sensitive ears were beginning to hurt from all the yelling. I felt the Kougra's hand pull back and I was tossed through the air. It felt alright until I landed hard in a scaly hand. These amateurs didn't even have any equipment! I quickly realized the meaning of the word "amateur" as I was thrown, grabbed, dropped, and even kicked once for the next hour. These children weren't playing Yooyuball, they were simply playing keep away. It was awful! At the end of their activity period, my back became very sore and my arms and legs were stiff from being curled so tightly. How could I be subjected to this? Was this really my fate for my whole life? How do Yooyus enjoy this on a daily basis? I couldn't believe how quickly my dreams of fame and fortune as an official Yooyuball Yooyu had dissolved. I wanted nothing more than a hot bath with lots of bubbles and a nap by a fire place.
The thought of spending my free time in sweaty locker rooms and loud stadiums was enough to make me cry. And cry I did! I flopped down on the ground right where I was and began to sob loudly. The sound must have shocked the teacher because he came running immediately and scooped me up, which only made my cries louder. I didn't want to be picked up any more! Ever! I did the only thing I could think of and curled up, one more time, and bounced out of his hand to make my getaway! The teacher yelled in surprise and I heard the Kougra yell "Get him!!" The loud call only made my escape more frantic and I rolled and bounced down the grassy hill and into the trees.
To make a long story short, I wandered through the woods for the rest of the day until my handler showed up and brought me back to the Yooyu training facility I had grown up in. I was put in a separate pen, not the usual one with all the other trainees. Terrified of what would happen to me, I stayed curled in a ball in the corner all night. Dreams of being poked and pulled at, grabbed and thrown, haunted my nightmares and I didn't get very much sleep.
The next morning I was taken by my handler in a small travel cage for a short walk down the road--right to the Altador Stadium! It was during the off-season but I dreaded what lie in that stadium. It no longer symbolized my dreams of an exciting life of fame, but a life of imprisonment and pain. I peeked out of the cage, looking around for where I could make my escape as soon as the opportunity arrived. I decided then and there that I would never take part in another game of Yooyuball no matter what!
To my surprise, we did not go inside the stadium, but to the side of the building. Curious, I uncurled a bit and let my muscles relax. Sitting in the grass outside the stadium was an elderly Kacheek, his cane discarded a few feet away from where he sat. He held a handful of flowers that he was forming into a chain. When he saw my handler approaching with my cage, he dropped the flowers and stood up, brushing his trousers off with his hands. He and my handler talked for a minute and I wondered what it was about. Surely this old Kacheek had no interest in Yooyuball.
After a moment, my cage was opened. I tensed, ready to roll off at any sign of roughness. To my surprise, I was not grabbed and tossed at all! The elderly Kacheek crouched down to the ground and peered inside my cage, calling softly and encouraging me to come out. I did, hesitantly, and stepped onto the cool grass. The Kacheek reached a hand towards me but retracted it when I flinched. He looked at my handler then at me and leaned back against the wall of the stadium, continuing his flower chain and humming quietly. I watched him for a few minutes, bewildered at his calm demeanor, and then curled up on the ground facing him. I'm not sure when but my handler must have left and I fell asleep. When I woke up, the Kacheek was asleep as well, snoring softly with a completed flower chain on his head. I approached him slowly and crawled onto his belly, laying down to resume my nap.
Later we went to the Kacheek's home and there was a soft bed waiting for me, loads of toys, and I could see a bottle of Petpet bubble bath in the bathroom calling my name. It took a little getting used to but I definitely prefer my new life over my old one. The best part? During Altador Cup season we go on the loveliest tropical retreat.